Speaker Biographies

Helen Booth Jordan 
Historical Museum 


Marty Brent 

General Manager, Black Creek Pioneer Village
Marty Brent has been General Manager at Black Creek Pioneer Village since 1991. Prior to that she spent 10 years with the Ontario Ministry of Culture managing the Community Museum Program and as a Museums Advisor.  She holds a B.A. in History from Stanford University, an M.A. in Museum Studies from University of Toronto, and a Certificate in Non Profit Sector Management from York University Schulich School of Business.   She has served on OMA Council and on peer review and advisory panels for the Federal and Provincial governments.  In her spare time she is a glass artist.


Carrie Brooks-Joiner 

President, Carrie Brooks-Joiner & Associates 
Carrie Brooks-Joiner is the owner of the consulting firm Carrie Brooks-Joiner & Associates. The firm specializes in supporting the leadership and management of non-profit organizations and has a focus on the cultural sector. Carrie has been active in the cultural community for almost three decades and brings expertise in planning, governance, community development and facilitation. Carrie teaches at the university level and is a frequent conference speaker and workshop leader.

Carrie has held leadership positions in the non-profit and public sectors. As a volunteer, she is a Vice President of the Burlington Public Library and a member of the United Way of Burlington and Greater Hamilton’s Community Investment & Linkages Committee. She is a former President of the Ontario Museum Association.


M. Christine Castle 

Consultant and Editor of Museum Education Monitor 
M. Christine Castle, editor of the e-newsletter Museum Education Monitor, serves as a consultant and peer reviewer for museums, galleries, government agencies, and professional associations across Canada. She holds an M.A. in Teaching, Museum Education (1981) from the George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and a Ph.D. in Education from the University of Toronto (2001). Dr. Castle has published and and spoken widely on museum education and the professional development of museum educators and has helped to develop real and virtual communities of practice, including a Peer Learning Circle, in Toronto and Hamilton, Ontario. For more information, please visithttp://www.mccastle.com.


Carolyn Cross 

Curator of Collections, Oakville Museum at Erchless Estate 
Carolyn Cross has worked in the museum field for almost twenty years. She holds a B. A. in Art History from McGill University and a M. A. in Canadian Art History from Concordia University.

Carolyn worked at the McCord Museum in Montreal in collections management for seven years. Carolyn moved to Oakville in 1999 when she joined the Oakville Museum as Assistant Curator. She has been the Curator of Collections for the past five years.


Carla Daly 

Ninavik Native Art Gallery


Ruth Freeman 

Consultant, Blue Sky Design 
Ruth Freeman began her museum career about 25 years ago at the Royal Ontario Museum as Coordinator of the Discovery Gallery and then Chief Interpretive Planner, Exhibits during a period of major expansion of the galleries. She has worked at the Ontario government as Manager of Museums and Heritage Organizations, coordinating advisory services and grant programs throughout the province. As a consultant over the past twelve years, she has planned dozens of exhibitions for museums in Canada, the United States and Ireland. These projects, of varying scope and subject matter, include exhibition master plans, permanent galleries, travelling exhibitions, and informal learning experiences for museum visitors. Blue Sky Design is a partnership, established in 1999, between Ruth Freeman and Paul Martinovich, who specialize in exhibition planning and interpretation.


Petal Furness 

Curator, Grey Roots Museum and Archives
Petal Furness is a mother of four, grandmother of one and a fairly recent import to Owen Sound. Presently she heads up the Heritage Interpretation department at Grey Roots Museum & Archives. She began working for Parks Canada as a student Interpreter at Fort Langley National Historic Site. She moved to Calgary to assume the role of Historic Site Interpretation Specialist. Grey Roots turned five this past summer and the growth has been phenomenal! The village is growing in leaps and bounds and we are happy to announce that we are the proud recipients of a MAP grant and that we are working with Basil Johnston to birth The Good People Aboriginal Exhibit on June 21, 2010.


Joan Goldfarb 

Co-President, Canadian Foundation of Friends of Museums 
Joan Goldfarb (co-President, CFFM) received her B.A. for fine arts at the University of Toronto. Joan serves on the Advisory Board for the Art Gallery of York University and has served on the Boards of Trustees of the McMichael Gallery and the National Museums of Canada. 


Dr. David Grattan 

Manager of the Conservation research division, Canadian Conservation Institute
Dr. David Grattan is Manager of the Conservation research division of CCI and is thus responsible for leading CCI’s conservation research. Currently CCI has projects in a variety of domains including: paper preservation, corrosion of metals, the long-term performance of conservation adhesives, and the preservation of electronic media, risk assessment for museum collections, packing and transportation of works of art, integrated pest management, the problems of iron-gall ink to name some of them. With a background in polymer chemistry, David has conducted research in a wide range of topics from preservation of waterlogged organic archaeological specimens to delicate fossils from the Arctic to the problems of defining a paper-permanency standard for Canada. 


Michael Herrera 

Michael Herrera, CA
Michael Herrera, CA has over fifteen years experience working with and volunteering in the not-for-profit sector. After leaving Ernst & Young -where Michael specialized in the not-for-profit sector - Michael led the finance departments of the National Ballet of Canada, YMCA of Greater Toronto and, the Anglican Church of Canada. As an independent consultant, Michael focuses primarily on the arts and heritage sector. He has developed and delivered tools and workshops on deficit reduction and elimination strategies, financial analysis and fundraising. Michael is currently on faculty at the University of Toronto at Scarborough where he teaches “Financial Management for Arts Managers”. 


Peter Homulos 

National Director, Canadian Foundation of Friends of Museums
Peter Homulos (National Director, CFFM) retired from the Department of Canadian Heritage where he held a variety of positions related to arts, heritage and management.


David Huff 

Interin Managing Director, Tom Thomson Art Gallery
David Huff is the Manager of Public Programs at the Tom Thomson Art Gallery in Owen Sound. With a background in Fine Arts, Arts Administration and Education, David has spent the past twenty years educating thousands of children and adults about Canadian Art. David has given lectures on Tom Thomson and his art across Ontario and continues his research into the life and times of this mythic Canadian Artist


Joan Kanigan 

Executive Director, Brant Historical Society
Joan Kanigan has been the Executive Director of the Brant Historical Society since July 2006. Since assuming her position, she has worked on building stronger relationships between the museum and the community initiating partnerships with Laurier Brantford and other area museums. Prior to joining the Society, Joan served as the Executive Director for the Museums Association of Saskatchewan (MAS), a position she held for 5 years. During her tenure with MAS, Joan has be responsible for overseeing many MAP projects and was instrumental in developing a new strategic plan for the Association and a marketing campaign to raise the profile of museums in the province. In 2004, she was seconded to the Government of Saskatchewan – Culture, Youth and Recreation, where she served as Heritage Policy Analyst for one year. During this time she was responsible for redeveloping the Provincial Heritage Property Designation Program and establishing management options for the Saskatchewan Heritage Foundation and Claybank Brick Plant National Historic Site. 


Kelly Kubik 

Community Program Supervisor, Museums of Mississauga
Kelly Kubik, who is the Museums Community Program Supervisor at the Museums of Mississauga, came to the field from a unique background. She started her career in Recreation, and has a diploma in Recreation Leadership from Humber College, and worked in various positions for the City of Mississauga’s Recreation and Parks Department before joining the Museums of Mississauga team in 1999. Originally starting as the Museums’ Administrative Coordinator, she surprised herself and everyone else by falling in love with Museums and showing a true talent for volunteer development and special event planning. Under Kelly’s leadership, the Museums award-winning events and growing volunteer involvement are thriving.


Jean Lauriault 

Environmental Specialist, Canadian Museum of Nature
Jean Lauriault, is Environmental Specialist of the Canadian Centre for Biodiversity at the Canadian Museum of Nature and author of the Identification Guide to Trees of Canada. He is reportedly seldom at his desk at the museum, however, doing field work in Michoacan, Mexico and, closer to home, as project manager for the Frenchman River Biodiversity Project in Saskatchewan and previously the Rideau River Biodiversity Project. Lauriault has traveled to Mexico for the past 15 years for the conservation of the monarch butterfly, including this last February and March for ecotourism trips and a production of a HD video on the monarch butterfly. He is a co-author of the North American Monarch Conservation Plan and is also working on the Canadian management plan for the monarch. Lauriault is also a teacher trainer for monarch biology and conservation and is involved in certification of the Canadian Wildlife Federation  Backyard Habitat program for monarchs.


Mayor Mike MacEachern 

Mayor, The Town of New Tecumseth


Amleet Mangat

Amleet (Am-leet) Mangat has been working as a contractor for the last two years in the museum field. Museological research interests in exhibit evaluation, wayfinding and visitor experience. Emphasis on accessibility for all visitor types, including individuals with learning, intellectual and physical disabilities. Recent work for the Royal Ontario Museum (travelling exhibitions, community outreach, and visitor experience) and Ryerson University (exhibit development and project management). M.M.St. Museum Studies, University of Toronto; B.A. Near Eastern Archaeology, Wilfrid Laurier University. 


Margaret May 

Principal, Lord Cultural Resources
Margaret May is a perceptive and experienced museum planner based on almost 30 years of experience working in and with a wide range of cultural institutions and organizations in Canada and the United States. A Principal at Lord Cultural Resources since 1999 Margaret plays a key role in Lord's management consultancy assignments, working with museums and organizations with regional, national and international mandates. As a planner with specialized skills in community and institutional needs assessment, organizational structure and processes, governance and human resources, Margaret develops effective strategies to accomplish institutional goals. She brings insight into governance and organizational development issues that are key to developing an institution's capacity to respond to change and remain focused on its mission within the context of a successful institutional plan. Margaret has made a significant contribution to developing new ways to serve Lord’s clients, including organizational performance assessment and implementation planning.


Mickey Mayne 

Marketing Committee, Downtown Port Colborne BIA


Kym McCulley 

City of Calgary Parks
Kym McCulley is the Manager of Environmental & Education Initiatives for the City of Calgary Parks and Natural Areas. Her career began as a Habitat Biologist for Alberta Fish and Wildlife 23 years ago before she began exploring environmental education. She has three decades of experience as an informal science educator, education coordinator, education strategist, and business planner.


Bob McFarland 

City of Woodstock - Community Services Department 


Andrea J. McLeod 

City of Mississauga - Community Services Department
Andrea J. McLeod is the Environmental Coordinator in the Environmental Management section of the City of Mississauga. Andrea has worked in the environmental field for over 10 years after graduating from the University of Guelph with an honours Bachelor of Environmental Science degree and Conestoga College with a post-graduate certificate in Environmental Engineering Applications. Andrea has been with the City for over 7 years working for both the Transportation and Works and Community Services Departments in various environmental positions.


Cathy Molloy 

Manager, Markham Museum
Cathy Molloy has an undergraduate degree in Near Eastern Archaeology from Wilfrid Laurier University and has done has done Masters work in both Near Eastern Archaeology at Wilfrid Laurier and North American Archaeology at the University of Toronto. After hitting the reality of the work force in the early 80’s she also began to pursue her CGA on a part time basis, attaining level 2. For seven years Cathy worked in the corporate offices of Peoples Jewellers in the finance department.

Cathy became the Curator of the Oshawa Community Museum in 1991. In 1997 she accepted the position of Curator of Markham Museum. In 2006 she became the Director-Curator of the Aurora Historical Society, which owns and operates Hillary House, a national historic site and is home to The Koffler Museum of Medicine. At this time she was also on contract with the Town of Aurora to advise the on-going construction and financing of the Church Street Cultural Centre and initiate the operational plans.

Cathy returned to Markham Museum as Manager in August 2008


Helene Moussa, Ed.D. 

Volunteer Curator. Mark's Coptic Museum
Since July 1999, Helene Moussa has been a full time volunteer at Mark’s Coptic Museum, fulfilling a life long passion for art and the study of culture, identity and history. She currently serves as the Volunteer Curator responsible for the administration and acquisition & accession of artefacts, overall care & management of the collection, training & overseeing of volunteers including interpreters, networking & outreach, research, coordinating designing of special exhibitions, coordinating the museum’s newsletter, and policy development.


Kelly Nemeth T

oute Sweet Chocolate & Ice Cream


Ruth-Ann Nieuwesteeg 

Patterson Funeral Home, C/O Main and Ferry BIA


Daniela Pagliaro 

The Township of Minden Hills


Maria Piacente 

Vice President of Exhibitions, Lord Cultural Resources
As Vice President of Exhibitions, Maria specializes in interpretive planning, content development and project management for cultural projects of all sizes, ranging in scope from art to science to history. Grounded in current museological theory, Maria’s global experience enables her to incorporate both conceptual and curatorial aspects with leading-edge technological applications, ensuring an exciting and enriching visitor experience within operational realities.


Kathy Powell 

Manager, Niagara Falls Museums
Kathleen Powell has been the Manager, City of Niagara Falls Museums, managing the three City owned museums and the Niagara Falls Armoury building for the past three-and-a-half years. Prior to this she was with the Niagara Parks Commission for more than 10 years as Manager of three of their historic sites. Kathleen is a strong advocate of the value of heritage in building strong communities as well as the value of community partnerships in creating a stronger heritage community. Kathleen has a BA in History from Brock University as well as a Certificate in Museums Studies with the Ontario Museum Association..


Stephanie Powell Baswick 

Port Colborne Historical and Marine Museum


Susan Semeczko 

Curatorial Assistant, Oakville Museum
Curatorial Assistant, Oakville Museum at Erchless Estate

Susan Semeczko was educated in Australia where she completed a B. A. majoring in Journalism and English at the University of Queensland and did a M. Bus. (Communication) at QUT. After moving to London, England in 1998 and working in Market Research for 2 years, Susan moved to Massachusetts and became involved as a Board Member with the Framingham Historical Society.

Since coming to Canada in 2001, she has been involved with the Oakville Museum, spending 3 years as a volunteer interpreter initially before moving into the position of Curatorial Assistant in 2006.


Janice Smith 

Canada's Sports Hall of Fame
Janice Smith is currently the Executive Director of Canada's Sports Hall of Fame and is responsible for managing grant projects, overseeing the Hall’s extensive sport collection of artefacts and photographs, and coordinating outreach education programs and off-site exhibits. She has worked for Canada's Sports Hall of Fame for 1 ½ years and has worked for sport museums and other cultural institutions in Canada for over 27 years. Janice has a BSc. and MSc. from the University of Alberta in Edmonton.


Barabara Soren 

Barbara J. Soren, PhD, is an independent consultant whose research and teaching have focused on developing and evaluating meaningful experiences for individuals who visit museums and their Web sites. At University of Toronto she teaches in Museum Studies and is the Coordinator of a Collaborative Program in Knowledge Media Design. Barbara has been Program Chair for the American Assocation of Museum’s (AAM) Committee on Audience Research and Evaluation from 2007-2009, is a member of the AAM 2010 National Program Committee, and is co-chair of the Visitor Studies Assocation 2010 conference. She is on the Editorial Board of Museum Management and Curatorship.


Paul C. Thistle

Paul Thistle has worked for twenty-six years carrying out management and hands-on mission work in all areas of responsibility for a wide variety of large and small museums. He holds a M.A. and a B.Ed. from the University of Manitoba, a B.A. from the University of Waterloo, and a Museology Certificate from the University of Winnipeg. He has instructed museum training courses for and served on the executives of provincial and territorial museum organisations and taught Museum Studies at Beloit College in Wisconsin.


Andrea Wilson 

Ball's Falls Centre for Conservation Authority
Andrea Wilson has been working in the museum field for thirty years beginning with her Museum Technology Diploma from Algonquin College. This led to Canadian Studies at York University and a wide range of collections, curatorial and management positions at Federal, Municipal and small Board operated Museums. She was hired by the Niagara Peninsula Conservation Authority to “LEED” the way in developing exhibits and programs at the new gold certified LEED Centre for Conservation. The building itself represents the stewardship goals of the NPCA on behalf of the cultural and natural heritage in our community for the past fifty years. This centre provides unique opportunities to encourage partners at all levels to share in these achievements, learn from them, and make them part of their daily actions.


Heather Young 

Young Associates
Heather Clara Young has 2 decades’ experience working with performing arts, visual arts and heritage organizations, facilities, festivals and community organizations. Young Associates, founded in 1993, provides consulting, financial management and bookkeeping services to cultural organizations. Heather teaches finance in Humber College’s Arts Administration programs and was a 2004 recipient of the Continuing Education Award of Excellence for Outstanding Academic Contribution. Her book, Finance for the Arts in Canada, has received praise for its clear and straightforward approach to building excellence in financial skills.